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Resentment over delay in road project

December 21, 2003

KOHAT, Dec 20: Public representatives, business community and transporters have expressed resentment over the delay in the completion of a 35-km-long section of the Kohat-Rawalpindi Road despite repeated warnings by the governor to the Frontier Highway Authority, and demanded that the contractor should be changed.

In a press release issued here on Saturday, Qalbe Hassan and Shaukat Habib, MPAs, asked the government to cancel the contract. They said the contractor did not have technical know-how to manage such an important project as well as the machinery required to execute the work.

The provincial governor had ordered the widening of the Rawalpindi Road from Cavagnari House to Gumbat which was to be completed by September 2003. However, the contractor has been unable to complete even 40 per cent of the work as yet.

It has been learnt that the contractor, M/s Faisal Construction Company, had complained that the FHA was not providing him with the machinery and Pesco was not cooperating with him in removal of electricity poles that had been affecting the pace of work. He had informed the government early this year that the project would be delayed by six months.

The governor, who inspected the project in October, had issued orders to the Pesco chief to immediately remove the poles and suspended an FHA official.

The poles have been removed but even then the work has been continuing at a snail’s pace for unknown reasons and the contractor says that the work will now be completed at the end of the next year.